I'm driving the 101 north as a soft rain falls on my windshield. I read the exit signs mechanically, searching for distraction. Bayshore Boulevard. Cow Palace. Candlestick Park.
I've just dropped my oldest son at the airport after his first holiday home from college, and everything is draped in grey. The road. The sky. The bay. They all fade into each other, one vanishing horizon.
I don't want him to go.
There. I said it.
I don't want to watch from behind as his steps take him away from me. I don't want to lose the blast of his too-loud voice. I don't want to walk into his room and find that everything is noiseless and still. The plaid comforter on his bed. The LEGO starship on his dresser. the Sports Illustrated and loose socks. I don't want to forget his face as he looked up at me, way up, so long ago, and said, "Hold me, Mama."